How Darren Chester voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should close its Manus Regional Processing Centre and stop all Manus-based processing of people's claims for asylum

Division Darren Chester Supporters vote Division outcome

27th Nov 2012, 8:18 PM – Representatives Migration Amendment (Unauthorised Maritime Arrivals and Other Measures) Bill 2012 - Second Reading - Read a second time

Show detail

The majority voted in favour of a motion to read the bill a second time.

This means that the majority agree with the main idea of the bill and that it can now be discussed in greater detail.

The main idea of the bill is to ensure that asylum seekers who unlawfully arrive anywhere in Australia are subject to the same regional processing arrangements as asylum seekers who arrive at an excised offshore place such as Christmas Island.

Background of the Bill

This bill was introduced in response to a report by the Expert Panel on Asylum Seekers, particularly Recommendation 14 which states that: "the Migration Act 1958 be amended so that arrival anywhere on Australia by irregular maritime means will not provide individuals with a different lawful status than those who arrive in an excise offshore place".(Read the full report here. )

By implementing this recommendation, the bill extends the excision regime that was introduced in 2001 following the Tampa affair. That regime provides that asylum seekers who arrive in Australia at excised offshore places are unable to apply for protection visas (in effect, refugee status under Australian law) unless the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship decides it is in the public interest that they do so. The effect of this bill will be to extend the excision provisions to the whole country.(More information on the Migration Amendment (Unauthorised Maritime Arrivals and Other Measures) Bill 2012 is available on the bills digest (680 KB). Also see an ABC news report explaining the effect of this bill here.)

This means that all asylum seekers arriving by boat in either mainland Australia or an offshore Australian territory that has been excised are unable to apply for protection visas and will be sent to regional processing countries (currently Papua New Guinea and Nauru) for the processing of their refugee claims. The rationale behind this legislation is the need to discourage asylum seekers arriving in Australia by boat because of the dangers involved.

References

absent No Passed by a large majority

How "never voted" is worked out

Normally a person's votes count towards a score which is used to work out a simple phrase to summarise their position on a policy. However in this case Darren Chester was absent during all divisions for this policy. So, it's impossible to say anything concrete other than that they have "never voted" on this policy.